Novels which have appeared on the New York Times’ Bestseller List.

The Reader

It has been argued that Hanna’s literal ignorance (illiteracy) is a metaphor for our generation’s ignorance of the enormity of the Holocaust. Once she remedied her ignorance, she was unable to live with herself when it was coupled with her real-life experience of the Holocaust. While I agree with the aphorism ‘those who remain ignorant of history are doomed to repeat it’, I disagree that Hanna would be unaware on a human level of the atrocities being committed.

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The Time Traveler’s Wife

One thing I can say about the story is that Henry’s interaction as an adult with Claire as a little girl is very much part of the love story, rather than being creepy. It could easily have veered into a grotesque, Humbert Humbert-ish parody of a May-December relationship, but it doesn’t.

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The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

Dawsey reveals that he is a founding member of the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society – a group formed as a lark when he and several neighbors were caught breaking curfew by the Nazis, and in part to conceal a secret roast pig. As time went on, however, the society became important to all of them as a way to distract themselves from the Occupation, and strong friendships were forged.

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In the Woods

The tone is eerily set when on one such night, three children disappear into the woods to play and don’t return. The police are dispatched, and find no traces whatsoever of two of the children. The third, a terrified little boy with his fingernails embedded in the tree he is plastered against, is catatonic and his shoes are filled with blood.

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The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

Although brilliant, Christopher struggles with many of the trappings of such a disorder. He is agoraphobic, afraid of strangers, dislikes being touched, dislikes any deviation from a predictable routine, cannot correctly interpret tone of voice or facial expressions, and very much lives in his own world. His tutor, Siobhan, has drawn a chart with faces on it displaying various expressions, which Christopher carries around with him so that he can compare it with the faces of those he interacts with; helping him understand if they are happy, sad, angry, etc.

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The Thirteenth Tale

She has given hundreds of interviews over the course of her career “My genius is not so fragile that it must be shut away”, but when it comes to the inevitable questions about herself; she’s cooperative but her answers are always lies. Not lies, stories. After all, storytelling is her craft, and there is nothing more telling than a good story.

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